Based on conversations that took place prior to the Grand Prix of Great Britain, it seemed as though a lot of Fantasy MX Manager players were pleased with their riders. It was hardly surprising, seeing as eight rounds were in the rear-view mirror and a lot of the stars had settled into their respective spots. The fact that happened allowed players to determine who offers the greatest return on the game.
Things changed drastically at the British Grand Prix though and players have been left scratching their heads. Jed Beaton, who was arguably the best pick on the whole game, crashed out of the second moto and sustained significant leg and ankle injuries. The injuries will keep him out of action for quite some time and have forced thousands of players to hunt for a worthy replacement. The problem is that there is not one in the current field, however, as every rider who costs two hundred thousand euros has had a turbulent term. Beaton hovered around the top five consistently and paid off at every single round.
Jago Geerts jumps off of the page as a rider who could potentially deliver, especially considering that he finished second overall at the Grand Prix of Latvia. Jed Beaton did not even manage to do that! There is no doubt that he was a very hot pick at that point in the season. Geerts is now coming off of some difficult weeks though, as a seventh has been greatest moto finish at the previous two rounds. Even that is not too bad, especially considering that he costs four hundred thousand euros less than the guy who was just six positions further ahead, but it is not going to be enough to help a player move up through the rankings and steal 24MX vouchers.
Although selecting Jago Geerts ahead of the Grand Prix of France is a questionable move, there is no doubt that he is going to be brilliant the week after. The sand of Ottobiano, the circuit that will host the Grand Prix of Lombardia in eight days, will serve him well, much like Valkenswaard and Kegums did. It may be worth picking him now just to ensure that your team is ready for the following event. Alternatively, constantly switching between Geerts and another rider could be positive. One must be comfortable with the rest of their squad in order to make that move, however, as it would use up the single transfer every week.
Henry Jacobi could be a solid candidate, especially taking his recent form into account. The Husqvarna-mounted pilot has dropped outside of the top eight just once in the last three rounds and that is not too dissimilar to what Jed Beaton was doing. It is just a little more concerning to select him, however, as he can be a ticking time bomb. Valkenswaard, RedSand and Orlyonok were all disastrous outings that a Fantasy MX Manager player just cannot afford to have. It is a risk that could pay off, but it is likely that it will go the other way at some point. Do the positives outweigh the risks that much?
Anthony Rodriguez also costs two hundred thousand euros and must enter the conversation at this point. Most players will want to see more before pushing him onto their team, but the Grand Prix of Great Britain was promising. Consistency has always been a slight issue for him, when he has been in the United States anyway, and he has not raced in the FIM Motocross World Championship long enough to prove that he can master that on European soil. If he can find a way to hover around the top ten each week, just like he did last weekend, then he suddenly becomes a solid pick that a player can rely on.
Davy Pootjes is another respectable pick and, hey, his results have not been that bad at the recent events. The opening moto at the Grand Prix of Great Britain was a bit of a mess, but he rebounded well in the final encounter. Aside from Agueda, where he amassed six measly points across the two motos, he has not had an awful round. The Grand Prix of France could turn out to be a mud race too. Although fantasy picks then become a lottery, Pootjes was very impressive at the Grand Prix of Indonesia fourteen months ago. Perhaps there is the potential to score some big points and gain significant ground with the rising star?
The fact that Conrad Mewse has not been mentioned yet acts as proof of how far he has fallen. Mewse has been in the top ten once since the Grand Prix of Trentino, which was run two months ago, so simply cannot be considered. It is not worth the gamble at all. If things were going to turn around at all, then one would have presumed that it would have happened at his home Grand Prix last week. Adam Sterry is another risky pick, simply because of the time that he has missed with the ankle injury. Establishing momentum should be a priority for the F&H Racing Kawasaki rider, who sits alongside Jed Beaton beneath the awning, first. There is no doubt that squad will feel the hit of losing Beaton in the coming weeks too.
Words: Lewis Phillips | Lead Image: Yamaha Racing